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2019_Stealth t1_jdkmu58 wrote

Electric vehicles are a step in the right direction. WFH helps too.


RevolutionaryCoyote t1_jdl39tn wrote

If a car is going over about 30-40 mph most of the noise is from the tires. So EVs are just as loud.


IceBearCares t1_jdl6194 wrote

Anecdotally of course, but I once lived about 2 blocks from a major freeway out west. When I moved in, the main streets were loud but the freeway... I could hear it.

After a year there the state repaved it with rubberized asphalt. The noise 2 blocks away was limited to some engines, crashes, horns. But no road noise. And driving on it was just as amazing. So quiet.

Don't know why it's not everywhere.


reid0 t1_jdlvw30 wrote

Sure, but I don’t hear any road noise from my apartment except for the odd motorcyclist or car tearing down the street at full throttle, and it’s definitely not the tyres that I’m hearing.

So yep, quieter tyres are great, but EVs’ lack of an obnoxiously and unnecessarily loud exhaust is definitely a big bonus, too.


RevolutionaryCoyote t1_jdmpzt6 wrote

I have never used the Common Noise Assessment Method that they referred to, since it sounds like a European thing. But I used to work in noise control in the US and even published research on traffic noise modeling.

It sounds like this model would have assessed your home as having low noise impacts, since it's pretty sporadic. They usually are based on average daily traffic counts.

This research is establishing a causal relationship between the steady background noise and increased hypertension. Transient noise from horns or an obnoxious motorcycle are related, but outside of what they were looking into.


Ftpini t1_jdm44ej wrote

Nah. That’s a dull “hum” that is basically constant. Since it is constant it’s quite easy to tune out and forget it’s there. It’s the engines that break through and become distinct.


RevolutionaryCoyote t1_jdmonli wrote

That's not what the research in the article says. The research is looking into the constant noise.


Ftpini t1_jdmt3y4 wrote

Clearly. And constant noise is not a problem. It’s inconsistent noise that is the big problem and what people notice. The article provides only correlation and no causation. It’s just as likely if not more that the exhaust and other air pollution from the cars is the problem.


RevolutionaryCoyote t1_jdmx8ri wrote

I haven't read the actual research paper, but they claim to have controlled for air pollution and established causation.


Ftpini t1_jdmzn05 wrote

It’s still just correlation. Showing causation requires a far more precise study than just looking at where they live and whether they developed hypertension or not.


ytjameslee t1_jdod29u wrote

Tell that to all the assholes with massive trucks who want to be heard, motorcycles, and idiots with modified exhausts. They recently extended a two lane to a four lane by my house and I can’t believe how many asshole drivers there are. It’s a residential area too.

I never heard a loud vehicle then look out my window and saw an EV.


Hrmbee OP t1_jdiqcpk wrote

>Previous studies have shown a connection between noisy road traffic and increased risk of hypertension. However, strong evidence was lacking, and it was unclear whether noise or air pollution played a bigger role. The new research shows that it is exposure to road traffic noise itself that can elevate hypertension risk.
>“We were a little surprised that the association between road traffic noise and hypertension was robust even after adjustment for air pollution,” said Jing Huang, assistant professor in the Department of Occupational and Environmental Health Sciences in the School of Public Health at Peking University in Beijing, China, and lead author of the study.
>Previous studies of the issue were cross-sectional, meaning they showed that traffic noise and hypertension were linked, but failed to show a causal relationship. For the new paper, researchers conducted a prospective study using UK Biobank data that looked at health outcomes over time.
>Researchers analyzed data from more than 240,000 people (aged 40 to 69 years) who started out without hypertension. They estimated road traffic noise based on residential address and the Common Noise Assessment Method, a European modeling tool.
>Using follow-up data over a median 8.1 years, they looked at how many people developed hypertension. Not only did they find that people living near road traffic noise were more likely to develop hypertension, they also found that risk increased in tandem with the noise “dose.”
>These associations held true even when researchers adjusted for exposure to fine particles and nitrogen dioxide. However, people who had high exposure to both traffic noise and air pollution had the highest hypertension risk, showing that air pollution plays a role as well.
>“Road traffic noise and traffic-related air pollution coexist around us,” Huang said. “It is essential to explore the independent effects of road traffic noise, rather than the total environment.”
>The findings can support public health measures because they confirm that exposure to road traffic noise is harmful to our blood pressure, she said. Policymaking may alleviate the adverse impacts of road traffic noise as a societal effort, such as setting stricter noise guideline and enforcement, improving road conditions and urban design, and investing advanced technology on quieter vehicles.

These are some important findings, especially given how the majority of humanity now lives in urban environments. Policymakers should take heed and look to reduce the noise in cities not just through quieter vehicles but by reducing the number of vehicles overall. Anecdotally, during the early days of the pandemic, many of us have experienced how quiet cities could be with reduced traffic volumes.


sandee_eggo t1_jdl719s wrote

A great start would be for police to do their jobs, and simply enforce existing noise ordinances against brappy Harleys.


Hrmbee OP t1_jdiqte0 wrote

A direct link to the journal article is available here:

Road Traffic Noise and Incidence of Primary Hypertension: A Prospective Analysis in UK Biobank


>The quality of evidence regarding the associations between road traffic noise and hypertension is low due to the limitations of cross-sectional study design, and the role of air pollution remains to be further clarified.
>To evaluate the associations of long-term road traffic noise exposure with incident primary hypertension; we conducted a prospective population-based analysis in UK Biobank.
>Road traffic noise was estimated at baseline residential address using the common noise assessment method model. Incident hypertension was ascertained through linkage with medical records. Cox proportional hazard models were used to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) for association in an analytical sample size of over 240,000 participants free of hypertension at baseline, adjusting for covariates determined via directed acyclic graph.
>During a median of 8.1 years follow-up, 21,140 incident primary hypertension (International Classification of Diseases 10th Revision [ICD 10]: I10) were ascertained. The HR for a 10 dB[A] increment in mean weighted average 24-hour road traffic noise level (Lden) exposure was 1.07 (95% confidence interval: 1.02, 1.13). A dose-response relationship was found, with HR of 1.13 (95% confidence interval: 1.03, 1.25) for Lden >65 dB[A] vs ≤55 dB[A] (P for trend < 0.05). The associations were all robust to adjustment for fine particles (PM2.5) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2). Furthermore, high exposure to both road traffic noise and air pollution was associated with the highest hypertension risk.
>Long-term exposure to road traffic noise was associated with increased incidence of primary hypertension, and the effect estimates were stronger in presence of higher air pollution.


Ad_Honorem1 t1_jdl8sbb wrote

Let's face it, it isn't simply "traffic noise" - it's the selfish, antisocial types with straight-piped Harley Davidsons and the wannabe Paul Walkers with modified exhausts on their cars. Regular vehicles are fine, modified exhausts and loud mufflers are not.


ImproperUsername t1_jdley7x wrote

No, it’s noise pollution and no vehicles are fine when it’s right next to where you live. It’s mentally debilitating.


Ad_Honorem1 t1_jdm1jbm wrote

Loud motorcycles and modified exhausts still produce a ridiculously disproportionate amount of noise pollution when compared to regular traffic. I don't know why so many people are in denial about this basic fact. Regular cars will not wake you from a sound sleep like a hoon/boy racer or Harley rider will. There really is no comparison.


dumnezero t1_jdmdop9 wrote

They're the small number at the high end of the distribution.


ImproperUsername t1_jdnqcya wrote

I’m one of the people who lived next to one of these roads. While there’s no doubt that motorcycles and muffler-less vehicles contribute, what wears you down is the absolute constant noise of all traffic, you cannot escape it. Forget being worried about waking up from random loud motorcycles or jake braking, you couldn’t get to sleep from the sounds of car tires coming and going (Doppler effect). Just when you think there’s a lull and some relief, the roaring is back. It’s torture and unbearably depressing.

I also studied noise pollution in depth for my degree, so I’m really not in denial about anything. I actually know way more about this topic than most people.


Ephemerror t1_jdmnngp wrote

Yes, it’s actually surprising that we haven’t addressed this as a society, and bizarre antisocial actions are being seen as more or less normal. I have heard that some cities and countries are better at regulating this but unfortunately many of us do not live in civilised societies, and the existence of this behaviour is a clear reminder of the fact.


dumnezero t1_jdmdl4u wrote

No, it's all the cars and motorcycles and even buses and trams (which should get more priority). I do like electric trolleys, they're pretty smooth.


kushhaze420 t1_jdmzgqn wrote

How about we reduce traffic by requiring work from home?


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MrMitchWeaver t1_jdk06e4 wrote

Is it the noise itself or is it the PTSD of traffic interactions?


JALKHRL t1_je1swmz wrote

Tires can be a major factor in road noise. For commercial vehicles, some tires are way noisier than others, and also can affect fuel (energy) consumption. I dream about the day when I go to work and a true hybrid truck is waiting for me. No more diesel deafening noise for me or neighbors. Noise pollution will drastically decrease as soon as fuel cell or electric commercial vehicles are massively adopted.


special_reddit t1_jdjnz8l wrote

Odd title. "Road noise" is typically what we call the noise that comes from your car'd being in contact with the road itself - road noise is louder on bumpier roads, more quiet on smooth roads. It also depends on how much noise-dampening ability your car's cabin has.

The sounds of traffic are different.


Declwn t1_jdjudwu wrote

What’s a non-literal way blood pressure rises ..